I hope that you’ve heard about the study from The Center for Public Integrity in which they collected 935 false statements by eight top administration officials in the period before the March 18, 2003 invasion of Iraq.
We have the searchable database now. Provable, documented lies that can’t disappear or be denied.
Iraq: The War Card – Orchestrated Deception on the Path to War argues that following 9/11, President Bush and seven top officials of his administration waged a carefully orchestrated campaign of misinformation about the threat posed by Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.
According to the Washington AFP newswire at Yahoo news:
“These false statements dramatically increased in August 2002, just prior to congressional consideration of a war resolution and during the critical weeks in early 2003 when the president delivered his State of the Union address and Powell delivered his memorable presentation to the U.N. Security Council,” the CIJ added.
Bush was the chief of misstatement, with 260 — about weapons of mass destruction and links to Al-Qaeda in Iraq, trailed by then-secretary of state Powell with 254, the study charged.
The center emphasizes the point that its work calls into question “the repeated assertions of (George W.) Bush administration officials that they were merely the unwitting victims of bad intelligence.”
John Cushman at the Washington Post points out that
The database shows how even after the invasion, when a consensus emerged that the prewar intelligence assessments were flawed, administration officials occasionally suggested that the weapons might still be found. The officials have defended many of their prewar statements as having been based on the intelligence that was available at the time — although there is now evidence that some statements contradicted even the sketchy intelligence of the time.
No, they didn’t lie to us a thousand times…. it was just a little under that. But there were spikes – increases in the frequency and intensity of the statements – at politically opportune times. This suggests that they knew they were lying.
The study concluded that the statements “were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses.”
Keith Olberman unpacks it with Rachel Maddow: